U.S. Stalled By Rain In Americas Cup
Fate dealt the United States senior cricket team a damaging blow yesterday
(Friday (August 25) as rain interrupted a masterful display by the
squad at the Americas Cup cricket competition in Canada.
With two victories in the bag and en-route to an upset victory over
pre-tournament favorites and World Cup bound Bermuda yesterday, the
clouds opened and rain thundered down to cause abandonment in the
key fixture which was likely to determine the competition’s
Cush (Photo by John Aaron)
one stage, led by run hungry, in-form captain Steve Massiah, the U.S.
were racing along to a possible 300-run total in the 50 overs a side
clash, off the strong Bermuda attack.. With Massiah going great guns
on 77 not out and prolific Sushil Nadkarni unbeaten on 63, the U.S,
were 158 runs for one wicket off 27 overs, scoring at more than five
runs an over at the first of several rain interruptions.
At the time the innings was reduced to 40 overs after an early lunch,
and when the penultimate stoppage came, the U.S. were still going
strong on 213-4 off 34 overs. When play resumed, the lost time resulted
in Bermuda starting their innings and they were struggling at 14-2
off two overs when the umpires pulled the players off for bad light,
after Bermuda were set a Duckworth/Lewis target of 163 in 25 overs.
The outcome means the U.S. will have to rely on good weather today
(August 26) to give themselves a chance of winning the competition
by defeating Canada in their final game.
But the forecast is not good, as it is expected to rain again today,
which if it results in another abandonment, Bermuda would be crowned
champions as they would’ve completed their campaign comprising
three wins and yesterday’s abandoned encounter.
At the conclusion of the innings yesterday, Massiah was celebrating
his third straight brilliant batting display, hitting 81 to follow
up on a blistering century and a another cracking half century from
his team’s two completed games.
He found an equally avid run hound in India-born Nadkarni who also
has a ton to his name in the series, making his debut for the U.S.
U.S. team official Carlyle Miller said the rain was a bitter blow
to the team, making a comeback to international competition as a new-look
“Everyone here felt we were likely to defeat Bermuda and it
is unfortunate there are no provisions for rain,” Miller told
Cricket International from the Maple Leave ground in Toronto yesterday.
“It is an impressive display so far, the batting is clicking,
the bowlers are sharp and it is noticeable, the fielding is more energetic,”
he said of the squad.
In their two completed games, the powerful U.S. side brushed aside
the Cayman Islands and Argentina to setup the crucial clash with Bermuda
after hosts Canada were shocked to an eight wicket defeat to the former
team on Tuesday.
Against Cayman Islands, Massiah and Nadkarni pulverized the attack
to pave the way for an emphatic 106-run victory on Monday.
The new U.S. captain Massiah hammered 136 not out and Kadkarni, stroked
his way to 111 to lead them to a mammoth 300-2 in their allotted 50
overs. In reply Cayman Islands were bundled out for 194 in 42.1 overs.
Paaceman Imran Iwan led the rout with three wickets for 47 runs from
eight overs while his opening partner Steve Pitter bagged 2-21 and
off spinner Chintan Patel supported with 2-30. F’ Hinds and
J. Linton topscored with 33 each for the losing Theo Cuffy coached
The U.S. then followed up by thrashing Argentina by eight wickets
in their second game on Wednesday.
They were hardly made to break a sweat by rolling over the South American
minnows at the Maple Leaf ground, spearheaded by a compelling Man
of the Match performance by Lennox Cush who celebrated his U.S. debut
in fine style.
Massiah and company were not afforded the opportunity to plunder another
300-odd target as they lost the toss and Argentina decided to bat
first. It allowed the bowlers to stamp their authority and they obliged,
restricting the opposition to 182 all out in the penultimate over.
Cush got his first real bowl of the series and was frugal and effective
as expected, bagging 2-30 from nine overs. Iwan was again among the
wickets, capturing three, but conceding an expensive 51 runs tally
in the process. Medium pacer Khawaja Shuja got into the act with an
impressive 2-22 haul.
Cush then returned with the bat to slaughter Argentina’s attack
with a hurricane 73 off only 42 balls to spur the U.S. to 183-3 in
27.2 overs. Cush who batted at number five outscored everyone including
Massiah who hit a patient 54 not out batting at number three.
A Ferguson made a fine 57 and D. Forrester 43 for Argentina amid the
Weather permitting, the hard hitting U.S. team will hope fate smiles
on them today to entertain the Canadian fans more and sweep the Americas
Cup in the process, via a superior run rate to Bermuda, by notching
their third win in the competition.
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